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Latest posts by BobTheGardener

Thuja Plicata turned red

Posted: 04/01/2013 at 01:05

The base looks as though the bark had been damaged by something (could a mower or strimmer have stripped it?  Perhaps animal or fungal damage?)  I would cut the red (which is dead) top off, immediately above the green growth, which then has a better chance of taking over as the main stem, although it will probably always have an odd shape.

dead tree fungi

Posted: 04/01/2013 at 00:53

Hi Dave,

I agree, those are bracket fungi of some kind and will not affect any surrounding plants.  Personally, I enjoy seeing fungi growing like that and find them fascinating.  Apart from wood-boring beetle larvae, fungi are the primary way wood is naturally broken down and returned to the soil.  The bracket fungi will eventually make the wood become very weak, so if any of the dead branches are above head height, I'd recommend you cut them off now in case they fall on someone. As LeadFarmer said though, it is always risky leaving dead tree stumps in the ground as they can become a base for a Honey Fungus infection, although I'm 100% certain that's not what you are seeing at this point.

dead tree fungi

Posted: 02/01/2013 at 21:50

Dave, as Lyon said, can you post a picture of the fungus?  If it's actually growing out of the trunk, that's good news as the dreaded Honey Fungus usually only appears on the ground, near affected trees and shrubs.  It looks like a normal mushroom but has a yellowy-brown (well, honey coloured!) cap and usually appears in small groups.


Posted: 02/01/2013 at 21:41

Paul2, you could do that but the easiest thing to do with baskets is to use slow release fertilser 'plugs' which you just push into the compost.  T&M have a video to show you what I mean:

Happy New Year

Posted: 01/01/2013 at 23:07

From the bean to the brussel, the bat to the bee, here's to a good year in 2013!

Happy New Year to all the forum.

What's the weather like in your area?

Posted: 31/12/2012 at 16:20

The clouds have now mostly cleared and a beautiful blue sky appeared here (nr Leicester.)  Unfortunately, the sun has just set!   Oh well, a couple of glasses of "liquid sunshine" will no doubt brighten up the day, later!

new years resolution

Posted: 31/12/2012 at 02:21
nutcutlet wrote (see)

Don't sow too thickly would be a good resolution for me. Plus don't prick out and grow on every seedling that germinates or I'll never keep up with the potting on, watering and planting out even if there was a space for it all.

Heheh - that's mine too!  Also not sowing too early, which I find difficult to resist!

Pride before a fall!

Posted: 31/12/2012 at 02:10

Hi Moonlit, I've been growing indoor cyclamen (Cyclamen persicum grandiflorum - the large scented ones) for a few years now and agree with the other comments - it's important that you let the seeds ripen on the plant and don't grow them in warm areas.  I find them easy to grow from seed - in my case I soak them for 24h, then just sow them on top of a pot of compost, cover in grit, water them once and leave until they germinate.  They produce a single normal leaf first (no 'seed leaves' like other plants.)  When the second or third leaf appears, I (very carefully, so as not to damage the roots!) prick them out into 3 inch pots, so the top of the tiny corm is just visible.   Mine are in flower now - lovely having them in full bloom over Christmas, and they'll go on flowering for months.  When they stop producing flowers, I drastically reduce watering and let most of the leaves die off.  In about July/August, they are usually completely dormant and I re-pot them in fresh compost, keeping most of the corm above the compost and cover the visible compost around the edges in grit.  I find they prefer a 5 inch pot when they are over 2 years old.  My oldest ones are now about 7yo and the corms have grown to about 4 inches across!   I'll add a photo or two tomorrow.

no blueberries

Posted: 29/12/2012 at 16:32

I don't see anyone saying to cut it back hard - just remove any dead/damaged shoots and maybe one of the oldest stems right down to the base, to encourage new shoots to grow from the base.

no blueberries

Posted: 29/12/2012 at 15:23

Now it's 4 years old, it probably does need a bit of pruning.  Berries grow on wood made last year, so you want to encourage new shoots and remove old unproductive ones:

Like others, I also recommend you get it a friend as self-fertile ones will always do much better if cross-pollinated.  Do use an ericacious feed as normal feed may not be taken-up well in ericacious soil.

Discussions started by BobTheGardener

Plant ID quizzes

Have fun identifying plants! 
Replies: 16    Views: 369
Last Post: 14/09/2014 at 13:17

Watering dried-out pots

Tip to help to stop water running straight through 
Replies: 13    Views: 333
Last Post: 28/07/2014 at 12:28

Blackfly - ladybirds to the rescue!

Broad bean tip blackfly infestation 
Replies: 2    Views: 192
Last Post: 13/07/2014 at 18:04

Bob's guide to picking soft fruit

Only fto be read by your household's main gardener! 
Replies: 3    Views: 180
Last Post: 05/07/2014 at 18:52

Lovely surprise

I went down the garden in the gloom.. 
Replies: 15    Views: 500
Last Post: 18/06/2014 at 14:32

Dragonfly/Darter/Mayfly ID?

Flew into the polytunnel for a while 
Replies: 6    Views: 309
Last Post: 01/06/2014 at 21:44

A week of rain = jungle garden!

It's been too wet to really do anything outside.. 
Replies: 16    Views: 679
Last Post: 01/06/2014 at 17:42

Deep Down & Dirty: The Science of soil

Replies: 4    Views: 407
Last Post: 24/04/2014 at 11:30

Check your delphiniums for caterpillars

Look for distorted and damaged leaves near the tips 
Replies: 10    Views: 480
Last Post: 22/04/2014 at 10:58

Seed grown Wisteria finally in flower - Hooray!

Planted many years ago 
Replies: 3    Views: 234
Last Post: 15/04/2014 at 12:39


Polytunnel growing 
Replies: 16    Views: 540
Last Post: 16/04/2014 at 19:05

First day of (meteorological) Spring

How id your garden looking 
Replies: 13    Views: 555
Last Post: 03/03/2014 at 20:31

DIY heated propagator

Making one from scratch 
Replies: 48    Views: 4207
Last Post: 30/06/2014 at 19:57

Cost of bird food

bulk vs supermarket 
Replies: 31    Views: 1707
Last Post: 10/02/2014 at 12:33

Wild Garden (Community Channel)

On Freeview/Sky 
Replies: 5    Views: 510
Last Post: 10/12/2013 at 12:21
1 to 15 of 24 threads